Woody Allen’s new movie, “Wonder Wheel,” doesn’t open until December, but he’s already at work on his next project starring Elle Fanning, Jude Law, Selena Gomez, Rebecca Hall, and Timothée Chalamet. The movie is reportedly called “A Rainy Day in New York,” and rumors about its story are resulting in another controversy for the director. Page Six reports the movie stars Law as a middle-aged married man who “makes a fool of himself over every ambitious starlet and model.” The 44-year-old character allegedly has a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old “concubine,” played by Fanning.
According to Page Six: “In the scene, the so-called concubine acknowledges her relationship with Law’s much-older character, but then protests that she is 21 years old. After a discussion about his infidelity, Fanning’s character then asks Law, ‘Were all these women for pleasure, or were you researching a project?'”
UPDATE: According to a source close to the film, in this scene Law’s married philanderer has a public argument with his wife (Rebecca Hall), who asks if a young woman (Elle Fanning) “is one of your concubines?” Fanning relies, “I’m 21 years old.” SPOILER ALERT: In the film, while Law and Fanning’s characters flirt, they never consummate a relationship, said the source. (Allen keeps his scripts under wraps.)
The new film wouldn’t be the first time an Allen feature has centered around the relationship between an older man and a much younger woman. “Manhattan,” often considered to be one of the director’s strongest works, starred Allen as a 42-year-old comedy writer who is dating a 17-year-old, played by Mariel Hemingway. He has often cast himself as the love interest opposite younger actresses; there was a 30-year difference with Helena Bonham Carter and a 31-year difference with Mira Sorvino in “Mighty Aphrodite,” while he was 37 years older than Juliette Lewis in “Husbands and Wives.”
Allen was most recently in the headlines for comments he made about the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment scandal. “The whole Harvey Weinstein thing is very sad for everybody involved,” he told the BBC, before clarifying his comment to Variety by saying, “When I said I felt sad for Harvey Weinstein I thought it was clear the meaning was because he is a sad, sick man.”
“Wonder Wheel,” starring Kate Winslet, earned favorable reviews at the New York Film Festival and opens in select theaters December 1. The allegedly-titled “A Rainy Day in New York” does not have a release date, but is expected to be ready for sometime next year.